Year: 2023 Source: Archives of Suicide Research. (2023). 27(2), 453-478. SIEC No: 20231257
Youth suicidal ideation is regarded as a serious psychological problem that hinders their mental health development. Parental attachment is considered a critical factor linked with youth suicidal ideation, but existing findings are still inconsistent. The present study was based on the PRISMA method; it employed a three-level meta-analysis to obtain reliable estimates of effect size and examined a range of moderators (sample, publication, outcome). Through the retrieval of articles published before November 2020, a systematic search yielded 31 independent studies (N = 12848) from which 109 effect sizes could be extracted. The present meta-analysis revealed a significant negative correlation between parental attachment and youth suicidal ideation (r = -0.108, p < 0.001), implying that youths show a higher level of suicidal ideation when they experienced lower quality of parental attachment. Moreover, the overall association was influenced by different parental attachment patterns. More specifically, youth suicidal ideation was more strongly associated with parental alienation (r = 0.501, p < 0.001) than with parental communication (r = -0.173, p < 0.001). The moderator analyses also showed that the type of instrument used was a significant moderator of the association between parental attachment and youth suicidal ideation. The strength of the overall association was significantly stronger when measured with the IPPA (Inventory of Parent and Peer Attachment) (r = -0.181, p = 0.003) than with the ECR (Experiences in Close Relationships) (r = 0.085, p = 0.003). These results indicate that assessing parental attachment is important in strengthening interventions that target suicidal ideation among youths.